Skip to main content

5 ways to make your patio feel less dated

Do you enjoy hosting outdoor dinners for friends and family? Or do you love reclining outdoors, enjoying nature while reading a good book? A patio adds a whole other room to your home—albeit a room outside the structure itself. Nonetheless, this often becomes your family’s “living room” during the warm weather seasons.

However, you might have noticed that this space hasn’t changed much in the last decade. Therefore, you might be ready to update your tired patio by adding a few eye-catching amenities. Check out these ideas.

stone paving on the patio
Max Vakhtbovych

Redefine your patio space with pavers

Installing pavers is a great way to redefine a typical concrete slab patio. Concrete pavers are affordable and come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and colors. Additionally, flagstone, cobblestone, brick, and tile are viable options for a long-lasting surface. To really add a distinctive look, you can try different shades to create a mosaic pattern.

Plus, you’ll have an easier time maintaining and repairing this type of outdoor flooring. You only have to fix one brick as opposed to redoing an entire slab. Also, the fix lasts much longer than patching up the cracks on concrete.

patio shade over seating

Add some cool shade to update your tired patio.

Create an outdoor haven by erecting shade over your porch. You can make use of some white mosquito netting by attaching them to your home’s exterior with hooks, similar to an awning. The chic canopy will tone down the harsh sunlight and bugs.

greenery and comfortable chair
Skylar Kang

Spruce up the outdoor furniture and include some plant life

If you have metal or rattan patio furniture that doesn’t come clean after a rinse-off, you might consider using spray paint to revitalize (or completely change) the color. Likewise, if the cushions show some wear, you can replace them with a whole new color scheme that compliments the colors of the frames.

Adding potted plants or vases with fresh flowers gives more color and texture to your outdoor space. Plants can be placed on tables as centerpieces, or they can brighten up the corners of the patio. Wherever you choose their placement, you might need to get varieties that don’t require full exposure to the sun.

Likewise, if you wish to keep low-maintenance plants on the patio, you can choose from different varieties of succulents. These types tend to stay small in stature but still add a pop of color, especially if they’re the flowering variety. Nonetheless, they also make cute centerpieces.

fire pit in the backyard
Max la Rochelle

Add a fire pit

When considering how to update your patio, you might try adding a fire pit. They add a fun and cozy flair to your outdoor space. You can fashion a fire pit out of the same type of bricks you would use for a retainer wall. One trick to try is to alternate two different tones as you’re stacking them.

For a square-shaped fire pit, you can use rectangular bricks or flagstones. Just be sure to consult with an expert at the home improvement or masonry shop about which materials can best withstand the heat.

outdoor patio lighting
Marco Cisneros

Incorporate lighting

There are so many lighting options to choose from, but they all share one thing in common. They all add a unique touch of beauty to your patio. For example, you can take a string of Edison bulbs to hang around the edge of a pergola or across the outer edge of the house. You can accomplish a similar but more subdued effect with tiny LED lights.

Yet another idea is to place ground lighting around the outer perimeter of the patio’s surface. You can also arrange faux or citronella candles on the main table and the end tables for a brighter effect.

All in all, the extension of your living space requires as much attention, especially when it’s starting to look a little dated. Therefore, when you’re pondering how to update patio furniture and ambiance, you can look to any of these (or a combination of these) ideas. You’re bound to find an option that suits your taste in outdoor decorating, serves a function when entertaining, and, best of all, fits your budget. So, take a tape measure and your imagination and get ready to add new life to your outdoor haven.

Editors' Recommendations

Leslie Anderson
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Leslie Anderson is a freelance writer/writing coach from Roswell, N.M. She enjoys gardening, cooking, and helping students…
11 bad ideas for your front yard that will kill your curb appeal
Avoid these mistakes for your front yard
A front yard with xeriscape landscaping

You may be thinking about all the projects you want to tackle outdoors thanks to the warmer weather. While you may have grand plans to improve your curb appeal, taking the time and patience to properly land on a front yard design is important. If you want to ensure you're staying on trend and not dating your home, there are some common mistakes to avoid. These will help with the resale value of your home and leave you the envy of all your neighbors.
Landscaping mistakes
These are some common mistakes you'll want to avoid when thinking about landscaping your front yard.
Not having a game plan
One of the biggest mistakes is not having a plan when it comes to the design and layout of your landscaping. This can leave your yard feeling disjointed and your plants at risk of looking overgrown and out of place. Meet with a local garden expert or map out your front yard, including where all plants, trees, rocks, water features, and flowers will live. This will help ensure things don't look too busy or sparse, and it will make your yard feel well thought out.
Using the wrong plants
Understand which plants work for your exact yard. If they need full sun or partial shade, or require a lot of maintenance, it may be a disaster waiting to happen. Not only do you need to consider placement in terms of sunlight, but different flowers and plants have varying schedules of watering, so you want to know exactly what's expected before you plant them.
Too many decorations
Everyone loves a yard that changes with the season in terms of decor, but you can overdo it. You want to avoid garden decor that makes your front yard look tacky or cheap (we're talking to you, plastic deer), so keep decorations to a minimum.

Color pitfalls
We love color, but you need to be careful how and where you use it.
Choosing all one color
We love a monochromatic look as much as the next person, but your home should be welcoming and warm from the first glance. If you prefer having your house the same color as outdoor furniture and plants/flowers, use it as a backdrop. Add one or two pops of color with chair pillows or your front door to breathe a little life into your home.
Choosing too many colors
While it's good to have a little variety, you don't want to overwhelm the outside of your home. Bright colors may work in some parts of the country, but go easy on the rest of your choices. Picking one primary color and one contrasting color that complements it is the safest approach, especially if you're planning to sell your home.

Read more
9 easy and effective ways to clear a garden full of weeds for good
Use these weed removal and prevention methods when your garden is full of these intruders
Gloved hand holding a pulled weed with roots and soil still attached

Growing a pristine garden is a horticulturist's pride and joy. That makes a weed infestation a gardener's greatest nemesis. Weeds not only make your garden look messy and unkempt, but they also suck up a lot of nutrients from the soil and weaken your prized plants. That's why we're going to discuss how to clear a garden full of weeds so you can save your gorgeous outdoor space.

Sure, the best weed management method is prevention, working to tackle weeds before they sprout, but this isn't always possible. So, if your garden or lawn becomes overgrown with unwanted weeds, you'll need a game plan. This growing season, keep your garden lush and tidy with these tips and tricks for clearing a mountain of weeds (and some bonus tips for how to prevent them from returning).

Read more
Rustic but modern: Why water trough gardening may be right for you
Water trough gardening will have you planting in style — here are the pros and cons
Water trough with plants

Water trough gardening has been a rising trend in the green thumb community. There is no one-size-fits-all method to achieving a beautiful garden: Some gardeners create gorgeous vertical gardens, some prefer pyramid gardens, while others would rather start a hydroponic garden. But water trough gardening is unique because it typically uses steel or other metal and is often used to provide fresh, clean water to livestock on farms or ranches.

If you are looking to achieve a rustic yet modern look in your garden, a water trough planter can be the perfect vessel to hold your plants. Here are the pros and cons of water trough gardening so you can determine whether it’s the best gardening method for you and your space.

Read more